Rostelecom, MGTS to be freed from monopoly status under FAS bill

3 Apr 2019

Russia’s Federal Antimonopoly Service (FAS) has submitted a bill to the government which, if entering law, will change the definition and regulation of a list of state monopolies, referred to as ‘natural monopolies’, in a number of sectors including local fixed line telephony. The proposed measures would mean state-backed national operator Rostelecom and MTS’ Moscow fixed line subsidiary MGTS losing their natural monopoly designation, freeing them from associated price regulation. As reported by TelecomDaily, the FAS justified the bill by arguing that existing fixed voice monopoly designations on dominant fixed infrastructure owners no longer made sense due to mobile competition. The FAS anticipated the bill could become law by end-2019 and be effective by mid-2020, requiring amendments to the Law ‘On Protection of Competition’ and abolishing the Law ‘On Natural Monopolies’.